Hey I wrote a book!

November 1, 2012

Terrible Nerd is tech journalist-turned-Web publisher Kevin Savetz’ biography of personal computing, gaming, and online adventures as a child in the ’80s, and follows the author as an Internet pioneer in the early ’90s and into his present-day Web success.

Rich in detail, personal memories, and computer specs, this is the story of a boy coming of age in the dawn of home computing. This tech memoir gives readers a front-row seat to a self-confessed geek’s early experiences with computers, from his dad’s beloved Atari 800, to an ill-gotten Texas Instruments 99/4A, to Kevin’s first Apple //c in 1984. Accessible to non-techy readers and computer nerds alike, this treasure trove of memories shows how growing up as part of the first computer-native generation shaped friendships, hobbies, and, ultimately, a career.

In fascinating detail, Kevin recalls his brushes and friendships with computer greats, BBS gurus, and pioneers of the worldwide web. He reminisces about text adventure games such as Zork and Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, and the early 8-bit era of M.U.L.E. and Jumpman. Terrible Nerd brings to life late nights experimenting with code in front of a glowing monitor, hacking the school computer to dial into BBSes, causing trouble on college radio, a stint as AOL’s Internet AnswerMan, and hosting a team of Microsoft suits in his small-town home office. Whether he’s begging TRS-80 time from a middle school librarian or lobbying his mom for a modem (stupid WarGames!), Kevin brings his experiences to life, writing with insightful candor and historical accuracy. While other guys were chasing girls, Kevin was typing in pages of code from computer magazines, swapping software, programming in BASIC, and scouring newsletters for clues to text adventures.

Terrible Nerd celebrates an era in all its geeky glory. You’ll enjoy following along as Kevin flunks out of P.E. class, gets busted for reading the Intellivision game catalog at church, and accidentally crashes the Internet for all of Europe – yet ultimately triumphs and even gets the girl.

It is now available on Amazon.com.


The big time

February 8, 2013

The Calabasas Courier, my high school newspaper that I wrote for in the ’80s, interviewed me about Terrible Nerd. You can read the interview here. At the start of the interview, the writer Gabi Weiss pronounced “Courier” so it sounded like “Frigidaire.” I told her that we used to pronounce “Courier” like the delivery guy. She was as amazed by my pronunciation as I was by hers.

Adventure Classic Gaming Interview

January 31, 2013

Adventure Classic Gaming, a site dedicated to classic and retro adventure gaming, interviewed me about Terrible Nerd and other nerdy things. You can read the interview here.

Read the full article →

Retrobits Podcast

December 29, 2012

In episode 142 of the Retrobits podcast, awesome host Earl Evans interviewed me about my book Terrible Nerd, and other things.

Read the full article →

Slashdot Review of Terrible Nerd

December 25, 2012

Tom Gellar reviewed Terrible Nerd at Slashdot. He called it “A rich chronicle that deftly mixes details of his beloved technologies with the zeitgeist a particular time and space. An entertaining read for technologists and non-techies alike.”

Read the full article →

Open Apple Podcast

December 24, 2012

I was this guest on this month’s Open Apple, a podcast about the Apple II. You can listen here.

Read the full article →

Kindle edition!

November 14, 2012

The Kindle edition of Terrible Nerd is now available at Amazon.com.

Read the full article →

Reviews of Terrible Nerd

November 2, 2012

Look at the things people have said about Terrible Nerd! “A joyous romp down memory lane for all us nerds who lived through the home computer revolution of the 1980’s!”   — David Simmer II, Blogography “Terrible Nerd is not only fun to read, but recounts some valuable computer history that is mostly overlooked elsewhere. […]

Read the full article →